Indian police start investigating whether Google’s Mapathon contest violated Indian laws: Reuters

Google, which launched Mapathon 2013 back in March in order to improve India’s maps, has been in the news for all the wrong reasons with Tarun Vijay, a BJP MP, complaining that this contest has violated Indian laws. Now, according to a report on Reuters, the police have begun investigating the contest to determine whether Google has indeed violated any rules.

Vijay had said that Google had violated India’s defense regulations on maps and had asked the company to surrender all its collected data to the Surveyor General of India. The Survey of India department first wrote to Google saying its Mapathon was against rules and then filed a police complaint. The Police transferred the complaint to its cybercell, which has started its investigations.

Google, on its part, has defended the contest saying that the main aim was to make more local information accessible to all and that it did not break any laws. It invited users to add knowledge of their neighborhoods and promised the top 1,000 mappers prizes comprising tablets, smartphones and gift vouchers.

A spokeswoman from Google India Paroma Roy Chowdhury told the newswire that the company has not yet received an official communication from the police and that it is open to discussing specific concerns over the issue with public authorities in India.”Google takes security and national regulations very seriously, and the Mapathon adhered to applicable laws,” added Roy Chowdhury.

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